Squirrels are pretty darn adorable but they can cause loads of problems for Milwaukee homeowners. They are notorious for chewing down internal and external building materials. As a result, squirrel control is a crucial need in cities like Milwaukee where human beings and squirrels share a space. A good idea of the differences between the city’s squirrel species is important in ensuring that efforts to control them are successful.
Take the gray squirrel for instance. These squirrels have been part of Wisconsin’s natural population from before the arrival of the first pioneers and they have endured deforestation which causes habitat loss as well as open hunting over the years. And similarly to how they caused problems the early settlers’ farms, they present challenges to today’s Wisconsin resident.
How Squirrel Behavior Affects Wisconsin Residents
Young gray squirrels become sexually mature after a year. At this point they start mating and reproducing, resulting in an average of two litters each year with each litter having up to seven young squirrels. These litters are born during late March to early April and late July to early August. It is during these periods that you’ll likely find mother squirrels holed up in your attic with their kits.
Squirrels tend to become problematic when they start to find food on your property. This food may be stored in your bird feeder as squirrels are known to have a love for bird seeds. They also feast on seeds from maples and elm, acorns, nuts, apples, corn, berries, and fungi. As long as these things can be found on or near your property, you’ll have gray squirrels hanging around.
They are also pretty sociable… with their own kind. They spend a lot of time running around on the ground with each other. It can be quite entertaining to watch them engaging in this activity. But they are typically wary of human beings so you are advised to keep your distance.
Signs that You’ve Got a Squirrel Problem
If you see or experience any of the following, you may have squirrels inside, a situation which calls for expert squirrel control services.
- Tree barks stripped of their outer layer
- Bird feeders knocked over or tipped in awkward positions
- Bird feeders being raided
- Squirrel droppings
- Scratching or rustling sounds coming from somewhere above, maybe in your attic.
- The smell of urine
- Seeing squirrels scurrying about
Keeping Squirrels Away
You can keep squirrels away by getting rid of the things that attract them. Start with food. Deny squirrels access to your bird feeder by erecting them at spots that are out of their reach. This means ensuring that there isn’t a launching pad (like a wall or tree branch) nearby from which squirrels can leap onto the feeder. You’ll also need to get rid of the other things that squirrels love to eat.
Ensure that squirrels stay away by using barrier devices such as fine mesh over vents and other similar openings. Others ways to bar them include repairing holes especially in and around roofs and removing hanging branches that are close to your building. Remember that squirrels can leap from these branches onto your building to gain access.
Of course, squirrels are fun to observe as the scurry about outside, but when they find themselves in your garden or building things take a turn towards disaster. In order to control the gray squirrel’s presence and activities in Milwaukee’s residential spaces, measures that are informed by the squirrels’ biology must be used.